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Meet the Man who won a $64 Million Lottery Just 19 Days Before His Ticket Expired

Merel Chiasson, a crab fisherman from Bas-Caraquet, New Brunswick, discovered he possessed the largest lottery win in Atlantic Canada's history—a remarkable $64 million
Image Source: Photo by Quang Nguyen Vinh | Pexels
Image Source: Photo by Quang Nguyen Vinh | Pexels

Fortune may knock on someone's door to change their life unexpectedly, but such twists in life often come at the right time. Almost a year after he bought a lottery ticket, a fisherman won a whopping $64 million, just 19 days before it expired. He had stored it on his bedroom dresser along with other unopened tickets, which he reviewed once a month before they expired.

Mega Millions lottery tickets | Getty Images | Photo by Justin Sullivan
Mega Millions lottery tickets | Getty Images | Photo by Justin Sullivan

The winner didn't even know if he had won $64,000 or $64 million when he took his tickets to a nearby merchant. "I wasn't sure because there were so many zeros," Chiasson stated in an Atlantic Lottery release. But as soon as his girlfriend saw his ticket, she realized he was the $64 million winner that everyone had been looking for.

Chiasson said that over the previous year, he had heard people talking about the unclaimed award frequently, but he had never imagined that he would be the fortunate recipient. He was surprisingly unconcerned about losing out on the big prize. I've always gone about my business with no expectations of a huge victory. Thus, I didn't worry too much and left the tickets there," he said.

Chiasson said that he will be able to retire comfortably and support his family with the prize money after working for 40 years as a crab fisherman and then at a nearby fish plant. "Expensive items are not necessary for me. I will remain the same after winning; it won't alter who I am," he said.

Chiasson has been a consistent participant in Lotto 6/49 for a long time, and he intends to keep playing as well as purchase a few more tickets upon verifying his victory. The winning ticket was bought in Pokemouche, New Brunswick, at Depanneur Pokemouche. A percentage of the winnings will be given to the merchant as a seller's prize.

Image Source: Photo by Peaton Hugo | Pexels
Image Source: Photo by Peaton Hugo | Pexels

The fisherman isn't the only one who struck gold as other people are getting lucky in an era of rising costs. Three close friends won an incredible $50 million by matching the Lotto 6/49 Gold Ball. On December 9, 2023, Carmen Austria, Gary Perkins, and Catherine Wall scored the goal. Despite only investing $10 for the winning ticket, each of them stands to gain nearly $16.6 million. The three consider their combined win to be an incredibly unique occasion. They have been friends for more than 20 years and lottery partners for 17 years. The group's response to the question regarding how they felt about the victory was "freedom, peace, and joy."

Wall believes nothing can prepare you for such overwhelming emotions. "Right now, it's incredible; I just feel grateful and happy," she expressed. Austria bought the winning ticket for $10, and they also snagged an extra $2 in the Extra draw that night. This win marks the first-ever Lotto 6/49 Gold Ball jackpot victory in Alberta and the Prairies, making it truly historic.